Saturday, February 18, 2017

Polish Stoner Rock Two-Fer

Hearing Double, Episode 2: 
New Polish Stoner Rock (with classic artwork), Times Two

STONERROR: Stonerror
Released two days ago, this is a great album from a band with a ton of potential.  I would be shocked if these guys don't listen to a lot of Black Rainbows, and of course Kyuss.  Here is the opening track, "Red Tank":
Great album cover (it 's what got my attention in the first place), but now check out the cover to their previous release (an EP), "Rattlesnake Moan":



SPACESLUG: Time Travel Dilemma
Released yesterday, this is a heavyweight find.  Really high quality rock that's a weird hybrid of prog, stoner and doom.  This is the track the album is named after, and also the final tune on the album.  It features Sander Haagmans of Sungrazer on vocals.
 Again, eye-catching ass-kicking cover art, but now check out their Bandcamp Banner, and tell me if that's not one of the coolest banners there's ever been?

2016 waited a bit to start putting out great stuff, and really finished strong but 2017 is a bat out of hell right at the gates.  Hope you've enjoyed this stuff even half as much as me.

Next Weekend...
-ULTRA

Thursday, February 16, 2017

LOTD! OPETH's ERA

LOTD! today brought to you by OPETH. They are back to creating extraordinary music.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

LISTEN OF THE DAY!!! HELL NIGHT's HUMAN SHELVES

TODAY's LISTEN OF THE DAY is the latest release Human Shelves by HELL NIGHT who originate out of ST. Louis and are currently fronted by Massachusetts metal legend BRIAN FAIR (OVERCAST, SHADOWS FALL..etc). This album is a blast furnace of heavy metal and hardcore that will knock you off your ass. Look for incredible things from these guys in 2017.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Greek Stoner Rock Two-Fer

Hearing Double: 
New Instrumental Greek Stoner Rock, Times Two

HAZY SEA: Electric Abyss
Released January 18th, this is really thoughtful and engaging instrumental rock.  Rocks hard like Karma To Burn, but covers lots of ground, like Pelican.  Only 4 euros (about $4.26)

Hope you dig , here.  Here's the opener, "Storm In My Head":


RUMBLE JAM: Redemption
Rumble Jam is more aggressive and heavy than Hazy Sea.  There's a little bit of a Pat Travers vibe, or a hint of Opeth from time to time, but no matter who it makes you think of, it is absolutely heavy instrumental music that does not get boring.  Again, only 4 euros; you know you want to.  Here is "King Mountain":



Greek stoner rock has always been a sure thing, but here are two new instrumental bands of equal quality to all the current greats.  
Hope you dig this half as much as I did...

Next Weekend...
-ULTRA

Saturday, February 4, 2017



ULTRA'S SUPERBOWL SUNDAY STONER SOUNDS

In honor of Falcons vs. Patriots, which promises to be a classic brawl, let's have a Georgia vs. Massachusetts Stoner Rock Showdown:

First up, in the red and black trunks and featuring dual drum players, the band KYLESA from Savannah, with the classic "Tired Climb" 
PS: Was drinking a bit when I posted a Maryland band here instead of Georgia last weekend.  These things sometimes happen.

Next up, Massachusetts' own MAGIC CIRCLE hits back with "The Damned Man".  This is one of my favorite tracks from a simply awesome album.  Turn this one up loud:

Now for the heavy-hitters:
Atlanta's own MASTODON with "The Czar".  



Currently based in Fairhaven, Massachusetts, it's ELDER with "Spires Burn":



(How do you pick one Mastodon and one Elder tune to play?  Throw darts)
These bands are not in a contest against each other, but let me know in the comments whatever tunes you like best, or what bands or tunes you think I should have picked instead.  There certainly are tons of great Maryland and Massachusetts stoner/doom/rock bands to choose from, but it basically comes down to this:  When you write the post you get to pick whatever suits your current mood.

Anyhow, should be an awesome Superbowl.  Falcons are under-respected, but even though it is a strange thing to say, so are the Pats in a lot of ways.  You know I got to pick my favorite team. 
GO PATS!!

-ULTRA



Friday, January 27, 2017

Interview With Heavy Traffic

ULTRA INTERVIEW:
HEAVY TRAFFIC
In December I "discovered" the band Heavy Traffic, and their 2016 release "Plastic Surgery" just blew me away.  I have since purchased their previous releases and realized what a powerhouse of ideas this band is.  The band members are:

Ian Caddick: Lead Guitar
Tav Palumbo: Vocals/Guitar (and formerly drums)
David Grzedzinski: Bass, Backing Vocals
Dan Bradica: Drums
Heavy Traffic now sits at the top of my favorite heavy psychedelic bands list, and I was lucky enough to get an interview with them.  Here's how it went:

I found “Plastic Surgery” through someone I follow on Bandcamp (FDJ).  I had already completed my 2016 top ten video playlist for our blog, but realized it could not stand, after hearing Plastic Surgery. 

After checking out some of your previous releases on Bandcamp, it seems to me that you have been experimenting for a few years now with variation upon variation of psychedelic music.  Lots of quality on your other releases, but it seems like you have applied a level of focus and attention to detail on “Plastic Surgery” that you hadn’t attempted before.  Is this accurate in your view?

Tav: Yah thats accurate, a combination of relocating to NY, new ideas from Dan and Davey, and also the ability to record ourselves in a larger space made this one special for us.
 

How was it that you ended up working with Twin Earth Records?
Tav: We had known of Ric since our last band and , based on some of the other releases we saw from Twin Earth, thought it would make sense to send it his way . He is great guy and we are thrilled to be working with him.
(Richard Bennett)

Your creativity really sets you apart.  What bands have inspired you over the years? 
Tav: Ians favorite is Led Zeppelin. I think bands that seem to have too many ideas for better or worse like Sparks or Boris are big inspiration for us
Ian: Thank you. Red Krayola, Iron Claw, the psf record label, mothers of invention, royal trux, ween


FDJ indicated that Ian and Tav have been together for a while, and that the two of you recruited David and Dan in 2015.  How did Ian and Tav meet, and what was your first jam session like?
Tav: I responded to Ians post for a drummer on the Santa Cruz craigslist in 2010 
Ian: Pretty awkward first jam session in the common room of the dorm I was living at, pretty loud and aimless.
Dan: Our first time meeting, we met in an 8ft x 8ft windowless room that had a bunch of empty beer cans, smelled like BO, and had a water cooler with no water in it.
 

 

David and Dan seem to be a perfect fit and complement to you.  How did you find them, and did the four of you hit it off right away, or did it take a while to click?
Ian: We auditioned one bass player and one drummer and they were Dan and Davey and they are equal members of the band now.
Tav: Astrologically each of us is from a different element so thats something.
David: By our powers combined...

 

What’s the first concert you ever went to?
Ian: Strokes, first impressions of earth tour
Tav: I think it was an Incubus show in Rochester

 

What’s the best concert you’ve ever been to?
Ian: Sleep at cocoanut grove in santa cruz, they are from san jose so its was sort of a home town show
Tav: Yah that sleep show was really loud. The Faust show at Market Hotel in Brooklyn last year was also something special.


 

Ian sounds like he has listened to so many of my favorite guitar players; I would love to know who his two or three most influential guitar players have been. 
Ian: Jimmy Page, Vincent McAllister from Pentagram, and Wata from Boris
 
 

Are there any bands you have run into that you would like to recommend to us?
Tav: Oranssi Pazuzu, Aluk Todolo
Ian: Cough and Wretch are a few bands we liked this last year.
 

 


I’d be curious to know which New York sports teams you are fans of. (I made the mistake of assuming that they all grew up in New York, since they are listed as being from Brooklyn) 
Ian: Lakers even though they haven't been very good.
Dan: I'm going to a Nets game with my dad in March. I got him tickets for Christmas.
 
 

Do you anticipate any live shows in Massachusetts or Rhode Island this year?
Ian: Hopefully if Tavs car will hold out we will be able to play both of those places this year.


Much like a kid who plays basketball every single day eventually becomes one of the best players around, Heavy Traffic has become, in my view, one of the best psychedelic rock bands of any era.  I am really enjoying “Plastic Surgery”, and look forward to hearing your next release.  Thank you for taking the time for this interview, and I wish you all the best in 2017.

Ian: Wow thanks that means alot. We are working on recording something now and hopefully we can meet up again soon


I am sincere when I call them one of the best heavy psych bands of all time.  I hope you will check them out here and here on bandcamp

Don't know about you, but I'm about to go check out Oranssi Pazuzu, Aluk Todolo
and Cough (already got the latest Wretch album). Thanks for reading, hope you also checked out Heavy Traffic on my Best of 2016 playlist. Catch you next weekend - will have some kind of Superbowl post for you. Over and out! -ULTRA


Saturday, January 21, 2017

ARCTIC
Got To Admit
The album cover caught my eye and made me check out this album.  The music made me stay through the whole thing, and then want to share.  Skateboarding, cliff-diving rock band out of Oceanside, Los Angeles with a sound somewhere between San Diego's Earthless and San Clemente's Fu Manchu.
Check out "Oversmoked":

and now the follow-up song, "Cryptic Black Sun":

Arctic Is:

Figgy: Guitar
Nuge: Bass Guitar
Frex: Drums
The album has was released in May 2016.  You can download it for 9 bucks on Bancamp here, or get it on white vinyl for an extra tenspot.

Back next weekend; GO PATS
-ULTRA